Writing wedding vows is not something you were taught in school, so we’re here to help you figure it out. There’s nothing wrong with using the standard wedding vows, but for those of you who want to make it a little more personal, consider writing your own. But how do you do that and where do you start? Here are some tips on how to write wedding vows so you can check one more item off your “wedding to-do” list.
How to Write Wedding Vows: What to Say & How to Say It
There are three key things you’ll want to include if you’re writing your own vows:
- What you promise — This can be light or more serious, anything from I promise to run the dishwasher every night to I promise to stick by you in sickness and in health.
- Infuse something personal — If you’re choosing to write your own vows, bring in a quick story about you to truly personalize the moment. It can be the moment you knew he or she was “the one” or how you’ve changed since meeting your fiancé. Being able to incorporate a personal element is probably the biggest reason to write your own vows, so remember this when writing them.
- Link it all together — Bringing it back to something relatable to keep your audience interested is important. One way to do this is through pop culture. If you’re big TV fans, you can compare yourselves to Brittany and Santana from “Glee”, or Beth and Randal from “This is Us,” to name just a few. If you compare your love story to a famous one (fictional or otherwise), you are sure to bring smiles and make it relatable for all (or most!) who are listening.
Call in the Experts
And if all else fails, there are a few ways to get a little help. Quoting a love poem, a favorite song, or an excerpt from a beloved author are a few ways to creatively insert something personal into your vows.
There are also experts in the field of wedding vows, and you can hire one of them. Katelyn Peterson, a wedding vow and speechwriter and creator of Wedding Words, has these really useful tips for getting started, “Start with a brainstorm. List all of the reasons why you love this person. Why are you excited to spend your life together? What promises do you want to make? What do you admire about them? How will you support them as your spouse? When you review your notes, the heart of your vows will be there.”
“Start with a brainstorm. List all of the reasons why you love this person.”
She then says that the next step is to edit them into the format you prefer. “By taking this approach, you remove the pressure and can see results quickly.” Peterson also has this bit of advice, should you choose to write your own vows, “Do not feel like you need to memorize your vows. It may seem like the more heartfelt approach but you do not need the added pressure. Instead, handwrite your vows in a beautiful vow booklet and practice reciting them enough times that you can make regular eye contact with your partner.”
Here are some final dos and don’ts of how to write wedding vows:
- Don’t procrastinate. Waiting until the last minute is a bad idea. There are many items on your wedding planning list, and as it gets closer to the big day, you might be getting more stressed. Don’t wait until the most stressful time to write down the very reasons you’re getting together.
- Don’t make them too long. The guests at your wedding love you, but they don’t need to hear your whole love story. Keep them to the point and sweet and you can’t go wrong.
- Do get some feedback. If you’re really unsure once you’ve got them down on paper, read them to a trusted friend. Feedback is helpful, especially with something so close to your heart that you’re sharing with a bigger audience.
For even more advice on writing your vows, check out Zola’s full guide to vows for every type of wedding ceremony.